[Column] The Power of Encouragement: The boy who met Beethoven

The Power of Encouragement: The boy who met Beethoven

Written By Rev.Dr. Joshua Hong

Senior Pastor of Full Gospel Church of Honolulu, Hawaii, U.S.

“Tomorrow morning at 10 you may come to see Mr. Beethoven.” A boy was ecstatic over the letter delivered early in the morning. To him, Beethoven was an object of awe and inspiration much like the dazzling Sun. At the time Beethoven was the most renowned composer. Many of his works were inspirations to other composers. To the boy who loved the piano, Beethoven was a living legend. “How wonderful it would be to meet Beethoven.” The boy who always entertained this thought was finally meeting Beethoven. Ironically it was round this time when Beethoven was gradually losing his hearing and avoided meeting people. Nevertheless Beethoven agreed to meet the boy.

The night before the meeting, the boy could not sleep. His head was full of complicated and anxious thoughts. It was eve frightening. He had heard that Beethoven began hating people as he was losing hearing. The boy’s mind was set on the hypothetical scenario of Beethoven bursting into a fit of rage all night. On the day of the meeting, the boy anxiously set out meet him. The two met and had a brief conversation. Beethoven asked the boy to play the piano. The boy stayed clam and gathered composure against tension and played a piece by Bach. After playing it with an all consuming zeal, he nervously looked at Beethoven. There was overwhelming astonishment on his face. Beethoven quietly said to the boy, “Your music has a living soul.”

The boy was extremely happy to hear this. He came back home and practiced even harder from that day forward. The encouragement from Beethoven instilled in him hopeful dreams and visions for the future. Later, he became a world-renowned pianist. He established his worldwide respect and reputation as a Hungarian composer and a pianist and his beautiful works are played by many classical performers today. He is Franz Liszt.

Just like Liszt, you can be transformed by someone’s encouraging and complimenting words. Therefore it is important to be near those who speak positively. What is even more important, however, is that through our words we can bring about change in others’ lives. Now go and declare the words of courage and hope to those around us. You will experience the miraculous power of the words of hope declared in God’s name generating more influence than any wisdom or teaching.

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